Five Minute Friday #8: Confidence

This week was more packed than a chipmunk’s mouth before hibernation!!!

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Or my face before hibernation.

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This week…

Lots of time with our noses in the books:

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I got to see my cousin for a hot minute! She was visiting from Canada to check out some colleges in Boston (not Boston University though…*sadness*).

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Fab breakfast and deep conversation with my friend, Lauren:

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An exceptionally delicious wrap with roast beef, pepper jack, roasted vegetables, corn salsa, lettuce, tomato, and honey mustard:

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Dinner with my dear friend Mai and her boyfriend (arguably the cutest couple I’ve ever known):

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Fish tacos that were messy yet delightful:

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there’s fish under there

A free Cyc Fitness class (aka my first spin class ever), compliments of Fit University founder, Sarah Gaines!

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Sarah just became a “Cycologist” (certified spin instructor at Cyc), so she kindly invited me and my friend Cassandra to her first tribe ride!

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didn’t know what we were getting into

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taken aback by the special shoes

Like I said, I had never been to a spin class before, so I didn’t know what to expect…

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…but, uh, Sarah kicked my ass. When that beat dropped and she went double time on the pedaling for two sets of 32 counts—HAHA. How. My quads are totally not adapted to moving that quickly for that length of time. Also, pretty sure I was sweating taco/I could still smell fish taco on my hands.

But the music, lights, and overall atmosphere were amazing, and I left feeling spent and sweaty as ever.

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Thank you so much, Sarah!! You absolutely killed it, and I would definitely come back to #getcyced with you again.

St. Patrick’s Day was fun and festive with our (my friend Kristy and me) first Shamrock Shake ever!

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I love mint. That thing was straight. up. SUGAR. I enjoyed it, but I honestly could not consume more than a quarter of it. ‘Twas a good experience though.

I had a large hunk of cornbread with turkey chili in the dining hall last night. Random, but good news.

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Not so good news: I have three exams next week.

Good news: Five Minute Friday is here again! I’m talking about confidence, inspired by my breakfast convo with Lauren. Specifically, I’d like to know how you guys feel about being “useful” to others and how you feel about compliments.

link to video!

Great news: This Sunday is Palm Sunday and next week is Holy Week!

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend ♥︎

So tell me:

Do you find that you need to be “useful” to others in order to be worthy of their time?

How do you handle compliments?

Have you ever tried a spinning class? Do you like spinning?

Have you ever tried a Shamrock Shake? 

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Quiet and Cozy Thanksgiving

I’m such a procrastinator.

But that’s not news, right? I have yet to do any significant studying for my two exams or any additional preparation for my seven-page paper due next week. I’m telling myself that something WILL get done today.

The secret of getting ahead is getting started. –Mark Twain

^^^It’s so harddddddd.

Instead of complaining any further though, I should embrace the attitude of gratitude. ‘Tis the season! It has been a relaxing and lovely two days spent with my family so far, but I started off my holiday break in Boston with a breakfast date!

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My dear friend Emma invited me to her apartment to make some FlapJacked pancakes (that I still had from BLEND!) and eggs. We finished all the pancakes and were pretty embarrassed when her apartment-mate asked if there were any left. #shame.

I arrived home with mom late Tuesday night, and since then I’ve been eating, hangin’ with my family, and procrastinating catching up on social media. Because I’m never on social media during school…

Wednesday involved eating, clothes shopping, grocery shopping, eating sushi, cooking, eating, gym, and eating.

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Kylie’s simple paleo pancake (SO FREAKING FLUFFY!) with copious amounts of peanut butter and pomegranate seeds + glass o’ milk

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late sushi lunch with mom mid-shopping

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gym with Pop

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homemade crab cakes! + plain Greek yogurt + sriracha

Ben came home late that night, so I stayed up late chatting with him. My eyes were nearly glued shut getting up for church the next morning, but it was worth the QT with the bro.

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starting Thanksgiving Day thanking God from whom all things flow

After Mass, we headed home to get cookin’! I fueled myself with overnight oats in a jar before transforming into a wannabe Barefoot Contessa. I was in charge of all the side dishes, and I asked mom to be in charge of the turkey so that I wouldn’t overcook it again.

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my love — stuffing 

In addition to bread, we used some leftover buttery croissants for the stuffing. Go big, friends.

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best roasted sweet potatoes

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rosemary thyme roasted baby potatoes

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honey balsamic roasted brussels sprouts and string beans

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cornbread muffins

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da bird

We actually ended up undercooking the turkey at first, so it was a fiasco trying to cook the parts that were still raw while keeping the perfectly-cooked parts separate. You’d think we would have this down after 15+ years, but…guess not. Nevertheless, the turkey turned out delicious and juicy!

I also went on a nice walk with Dad at the park after I finished cooking. It was the perfect, brisk weather for a Thanksgiving walk.

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Then we came home with a hefty appetite and dug in!

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The stuffing, rosemary potatoes, and cornbread muffins were my favorite. I know you know the carbs are the best part.

Speaking of carbs. Best for last!

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apple pie a la mode

We finished at around 6pm, so the rest of the night involved watching Chopped, writing this post, and just appreciating the presence of family. (Imaginary audience: “AWWWWWWW.”)

I feel fortunate that each year, Thanksgiving becomes a lot easier, mentally speaking. This year, I didn’t feel nervous about the amount or density of food that would be available to me, and I think that is because I allow myself to eat heavy foods outside of holiday occasions. I was definitely stuffed by the end of the night, but it just felt like a bigger meal, which is probably a monthly/biweekly occurrence.

As Julia so beautifully wrote, we just need to be kind to ourselves. I didn’t finish every bite on my plate, and I didn’t have pie immediately after dinner with the rest of my family because I wanted to digest for an hour or so. I still ate a lot of delicious food, including pie, but I didn’t feel (self-imposed) pressure to eat or not to eat.

As for working out, I joined my dad when he went to the gym the night before, but I just did a fun strength workout without focusing on calorie burn. On Thanksgiving day, we walked. We went with the flow.

I did not get to this point overnight, so I implore you to not be discouraged if you still struggle with restrictive temptations or anxious feelings during the holidays. In fact, there are many non-holiday instances during which I still feel anxious over food. Recovery is always a work in progress, but every effort to combat disordered habits and thought processes is valuable.

Tonight we’re going out to NYC to eat more. Not before I get some work done though!!!

So tell me:

How did you spend {American} Thanksgiving?

Favorite food from the feast?

Three non-obvious/random/quirky things you’re thankful for! yoga pants, clean public bathrooms, and towels that absorb really well

Incredible Things

There are some incredible things as of late that are noteworthy:

It’s incredible that Thanksgiving is this week. That means finals are coming, which means the semester is almost over, which means I’m almost halfway done with sophomore year of college, which means my senior friends are almost done with college, which means I need to shut the freak up before I go insane.

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dining hall thanksgiving dinner {that cornbread stuffing}

It’s incredible how kind people can be, despite the fact that you’ve only met in person once (or not at all). My blogger friends near and far have been nothing but kind and loving to me and to other fellow bloggers, often for no particular reason. Sweet prayers and messages from Julia and Hayley. Kind words by Emily. Heavy care packages from a certain no-bake king. All of YOU who choose to read about what goes on in my brain. God bless you.

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spoiled

The power of a 10 minute nap is incredible. I was in desperate need of a nap the morning/afternoon before my exam on Thursday. I could have studied straight through until 3:30 pm, but my friends forced me to take a nap. SO BENEFICIAL. My brain could actually function. Who ‘da thunk?

It’s incredible how talented humans are. Besides people like Michael Phelps, Mother Theresa, and Beyonce, there are some darn talented people around you! Including you. I was reminded of that at my friends’ a cappella concert on Friday night.

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It’s incredible how God shows so much love through people. It’s truly life-changing to have friends and family who seek to love as Christ loves.

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It’s incredible how much work I have to do over Thanksgiving. I’m just complaining for the sake of it, which is not model behavior, but… I have two exams and two essays due next week. It’s always a good time to be thankful for a great education, but this is REALLY a good time for that, eh?

It’s incredible that it’s still pretty warm outside in late November. Not that I’m complaining!

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It’s incredible that Justin Bieber made it onto my Spotify playlist. It’s his song “Sorry“. I’m sorry I like it. UGH.

The power of patience and prayer is incredible. Because guess what this girl got this weekend!!! Let’s just say I might not need another gynecology appointment. More on this later.

Find something to smile about at every hour of the day. When in doubt, nap it out.

So tell me:

Something incredible in your life right now.

Thanksgiving plans for my fellow Americans? I’m going back to New York to see the much-missed fam and COOK!

WIAW: Food Showdown

Today is yet another snow day. Yeah, I don’t even know what school is anymore. Not that I’m complaining! The only thing that concerns me is that I think we have only one more snow day allowed, if any, before we start chipping days off of spring break. That happened last year, and we had to come to school on the Wednesday of spring break……….Not happening again.

Anyway. Onto the WIAW fun hosted by the magnificent Jenn as always! Check out her blog to see tons of other mouthwateringly delicious eats.

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For the most part, I enjoy the foods I eat (well, one would hope!) but there are always those foods that are just outstanding. This WIAW, I’m showing you some of the food winners in my book from the past week or so with a food showdown! And since I don’t usually take pictures of my lunches (I’m always eating them on-the-go), there is no lunch showdown. 🙂

Breakfasts

Oatmeal Showdown

oatmeal showdown

The contenders: Blueberry Banana Walnut Love Grown Hot Oats V. hot banana oatmeal in a white chocolate coconut peanut butter jar V. overnight oats V. hot banana oatmeal parfait over Greek yogurt

Winner: Hot banana oatmeal in a white chocolate coconut peanut butter jar!

Yogurt Bowl Showdown

yogurt showdown

The contenders: Greek yogurt with banana, cinnamon, nutmeg, and pepita sunseed butter + random pizza dough pieces with honey and cinnamon V. Greek yogurt with banana, chia, hemp, a strawberry banana muffin, and peanut butter

The winner: The strawberry muffin bowl!

Snacks

I snack a lot, okay?

snack showdown

The contenders: Honey raisin scone V. carrots with jalapeño Greek yogurt dip V. various flavors of Fage Greek yogurt V. dried figs with plain Greek yogurt V. popcorn V. brussels sprouts and carrots with hummus V. freeze-dried edamame V. Taste of Nature nut/fruit bars V. homemade granola bars V. oranges/clementines V. dried pineapple

The winner(s): Scone + dried figs with Greek yogurt

Dinners

dinner showdown

 

The contenders: Farro with avocado tuna salad + spinach V. Salmon with farro and greens V. Super Bowl dinner of brussels, homemade turkey meatballs, and cornbread V. Leftovers of pizza, brussels with hummus, and a clementine (this was actually a lunch)

The winner: Salmon with farro and greens!

So there you have it— some of the knockout dishes that I’ve eaten in the past {two} weeks. Yes, I totally cheated on this WIAW by including some eats from two weeks ago, but I still ate all these things nevertheless!

I guess I should take advantage of this extra day to get ahead on homework, blogging, and such. I always say that I’ll do that, but executing it is a completely different story. Lord, grant me self-discipline.

Happy Wednesday!

So tell me:

What were some “winners” that you ate this week?

Are you a snack monster like me? What is your current favorite snack?

 

 

 

15 Christmas Morning Breakfast Ideas

Can ya just imagine it now? You open your eyes on Christmas morning. Excitement, contentment, and joy immediately fill your body. You throw off the covers to head downstairs and meet the rest of your family in your pajamas.

Perhaps you go straight to the gift unwrapping, or you exchange “Merry Christmas” greetings to everyone. But soon enough, after you’ve spent a little energy just being excited that it’s Christmas, you might notice that your stomach starts asking for a treat to match the warmth, comfort, and sweetness of the season as well.

So here I have for you a roundup of some delicious recipes from other bloggers that you may want to make on Christmas morning! If you want to just spend time with your family and friends without worrying about cooking, there are some make-ahead recipes included too. I, for one, kind of want to make all of these. But that would sort of detract from the family time and whole moderation thing, right?

15 Christmas breakfast ideas

Enjoy!

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Overnight Mini Baked Egg Casseroles via Yummy Mummy Kitchen

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Poached Eggs in Tomato Sauce on Toast via White On Rice Couple

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Easy Sausage Breakfast Strata via Weelicious

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Baked French Toast Casserole with Cranberry & Pistachio Streusel via Cookin’ Canuck

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Apple French Toast Bake via Minimalist Baker

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Bobby Flay’s Peanut Butter French Toast “Waffles” with Mixed Berry Sauce via Cooking Channel

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Pumpkin Spice Latte Quinoa Breakfast Bake via Healthful Pursuit

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Overnight Whole Wheat Cinnamon Rolls via Chocolate and Carrots

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Cornbread Waffles with Cinnamon Apple Compote via 84th and 3rd

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Eggnog Baked Oatmeal with Caramelized Bananas and Vanilla Bean Brown Butter via How Sweet It Is

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Easy Sweet Potatoes and Eggs via Edible Perspective

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Ham & Potato Frittata via Budget Bytes

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Overnight Eggnog Coffee Cake via Recipe Girl

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Christmas Breakfast Cookies via Yeah…Imma Eat That

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Cranberry Ginger Pull Apart Bread via Sunday Morning Banana Pancakes

Drooling yet? 😉

So tell me: What are you thinking of making on Christmas morning or as a special holiday breakfast?